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Switzerland Sues Google Over Street View

Over the last year, Google Street View has come under fire in countries all around the globe. Japan, Greece, Germany and the UK have all aired their grievances in one way or another. In September, the Federal Data Protection and Information Commissioner of Switzerland, Hanspeter Thür, requested Google be more stringent about blurring faces and license plates before images appeared online.

The FDPIC had several problems with Street View. The Commissioner was particularly concerned the inadequate blurring of faces and license plates in photographs taken outside sensitive locations like hospitals, schools and prisons. The Commissioner also had an issue with the height of the cameras. Similar to Google's plight in Japan, the FDPIC argued that the height of the cameras allowed people using Street View to see more than if they were just walking down the road, namely, into people's backyards or gardens.

A statement released on Friday said that Google "for the most part declined to comply with requests" and revealed that the FDPIC felt it had no choice but to pursue the matter further by taking legal action against Google.

  • theramman
    Ha Ha dumb kid on the bike ;)

    But OMG no everyone is a spy!
    Spy sappin my google!(gotta say that in the TF2 voice)
    Reply
  • dopeydog
    If an extremely tall person walks down the street and sees me fall off my bike, I'm going to sue him/her!
    Reply
  • m3kt3k
    LOLS. Whats funny is everyone is defending Google but if the Govt was doing this the same people would be flippen out saying the GOVT has no right to spy on them.
    Reply
  • dopeydog
    But if the Government were doing this, they would have different intentions. Does google care if you're on benefits but actually are halfway up a ladder painting your house? Does google care if your car is parked illegally? Google is doing this as a streetview, to allow people to view the street, not a spy-on-you-to-see-what-you-are-doing-view. In the case of the bike riding fail, anyone that lives there knows that you fall of your bike a lot, and anyone that doesn't, doesn't know you so what do you care?
    Reply
  • datawrecker
    m3kt3kLOLS. Whats funny is everyone is defending Google but if the Govt was doing this the same people would be flippen out saying the GOVT has no right to spy on them.
    Govt already does this with spy sats...
    Reply
  • dopeydog
    Its a common misconception that spy sats can see what you're doing. They are so high, that they cant see anything smaller than a few metres, ie they won't see you, probably won't even be able to see your car. On google earth, the pictures are taken from a plane. Anyway, thats besides the point. In the uk, the council have used anti-terror laws to spy on people to see if they pick up their dog's poo!
    Reply
  • precariousgray
    News at 11: Public information made public. Public outcry! Lawsuit ensues.
    Reply
  • chuckdalton
    me and my girlfriend are on street view, kissing, but I don't remember going to that park, and for some reason on that picture I'm skinny, tall and blond.
    Reply
  • Honis
    People would be flipping out in the US, but the government has every right to monitor public regulated property. This includes front lawns.

    Considering the UK wants to put Nanny Cams inside peoples homes to make sure you're giving proper care to your child, Google street view is pretty tame. Especially considering they take the time to blur peoples faces and license plates which they are under no legal obligation to do since you being on government regulated property is considered consent. This is why the News can walk up to you, take your picture and make it front page for no reason. You can sue for various reasons, but it's not illegal.

    Google is bending over backwards to keep people happy when it comes to street view. They take entire communities out at the request of the community.
    Reply
  • datawrecker
    dopeydogIts a common misconception that spy sats can see what you're doing. They are so high, that they cant see anything smaller than a few metres, ie they won't see you, probably won't even be able to see your car. On google earth, the pictures are taken from a plane. Anyway, thats besides the point. In the uk, the council have used anti-terror laws to spy on people to see if they pick up their dog's poo!
    You are referring to radar class satellites which only can only recognize thing 3 feet or larger. These were quite the big deal in the 80's.

    The keyhole-class sats have a resolution of 5-6 inches. These sats traveled at speeds estimated at Mach 24. This was the capability of satellites in 2001.
    Reply